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  1. #1
    Senior Member

    Speedlight setup for D3100

    Hi

    I am very much new to photography and love my D3100 but I was going to buy a cheap starter strobe kit from amazon BUT I really like the portability of speedlights.

    My question is how can I set up 2 speedlights on stands with umbrellas etc? I know the D3100 doesn't have commander mode so what would I need to achieve this?

    I haven't got a lot of money but if push comes to shove I will save up but to get my started I need a cheap setup. I can work manual mode with the D3100 but not the lights. I know I might have to manually setup each light for every photo so manual mode is really out of the question or shall I just buy another body?

    Any help is appreciated

    Thanks


    › See More: Speedlight setup for D3100



  2. #2
    Staff
    Moderator

    Re: Speedlight setup for D3100

    I did briefly look at remotes which have a 'commander' transmitter and anything up to four receivers - have a look on fleabay
    Sam
    Do or do not, there is no try.
    D5100
    18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR | 55-200mm f/4-5.6 VR | 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G VR
    50mm f/1.8G, 24-70
    mm f/2.8 VC (Tamron)
    SB-400 | SB-700 ​x2



  3. #3
    Senior Member
    carguy's Avatar

    Re: Speedlight setup for D3100

    Quote Originally Posted by MrNudge View Post
    Hi

    I am very much new to photography and love my D3100 but I was going to buy a cheap starter strobe kit from amazon BUT I really like the portability of speedlights.

    My question is how can I set up 2 speedlights on stands with umbrellas etc? I know the D3100 doesn't have commander mode so what would I need to achieve this?

    I haven't got a lot of money but if push comes to shove I will save up but to get my started I need a cheap setup. I can work manual mode with the D3100 but not the lights. I know I might have to manually setup each light for every photo so manual mode is really out of the question or shall I just buy another body?

    Any help is appreciated

    Thanks
    Welcome

    I'm new to off camera lighting myself. I've learned a few things by surfing this site & Strobist. My starter stand/umbrella setup arrived just yesterday, here is a link to the items I ordered.

    http://nikonites.com/flashes/12307-n...setup-way.html

    For $67 (US) I bought an umbrella, stand and trigger setup. I have a D40 and SB-700 and have shot a couple dozen images using this one light setup so far. This is a low budget setup.

    Regarding your statement above about manually setting up the flash for each shot, that isn't entirely accurate. Once you've dialed in your settings in a studio environment, you should be good to go for the most part.

    Look at inexpensive speedlights like Neweer & Yongnuo 560.

    Good Luck!
    Joe

    D750 | 50mm f1.8G | Tamron 70-200 2.8 VC
    Fujifilm X100T | Nikon F3/T, N90s | Minolta A5, XG1 & X-570
    Detroit Imagery / My weekly contributions /
    About.me
    Notary Public & Loan Signing Agent


  4. #4
    Senior Member
    WayneF's Avatar

    Re: Speedlight setup for D3100

    Quote Originally Posted by MrNudge View Post
    Hi

    I am very much new to photography and love my D3100 but I was going to buy a cheap starter strobe kit from amazon BUT I really like the portability of speedlights.

    My question is how can I set up 2 speedlights on stands with umbrellas etc? I know the D3100 doesn't have commander mode so what would I need to achieve this?

    I haven't got a lot of money but if push comes to shove I will save up but to get my started I need a cheap setup. I can work manual mode with the D3100 but not the lights. I know I might have to manually setup each light for every photo so manual mode is really out of the question or shall I just buy another body?

    Any help is appreciated

    Thanks

    Manual flash mode becomes an advantage for umbrellas. However, a hand held flash meter is very handy to set the levels, with respect to each other, and for the camera aperture. This is called "control". It could be done by trial and error (one light is very easy, but matching more gets much harder), but about the third time, you will realize the advantage of the light meter. It lets you set up the same situation again, same as last time, real easy.

    The umbrellas are relatively fixed, not much is going to change. Manual mode lets you set it up, and then it stays set. And the only option for TTL is a Commander anyway.

    Triggering modes are a PC sync cord, optical slaves, or radio triggers. These are all for manual flash mode. Commander is the only choice allowing TTL (and then only two or maybe three flashes).

    In a studio situation with umbrellas, optical slaves are very inexpensive and very reliable (more than Commander, because it is full working power level triggering them, instead of a minumum power command). Some speedlights build in optical slaves, and all studio lights do. They are very mainstream in a studio situation. Whereas radio possibly may be overkill, but radio becomes good for great distances, obstacles, or bright sun, but in the studio, optical slaves are easy.

    For optical slaves, you do have to trigger one flash some other way, then it triggers the slaves. That one could be a PC sync cord, could be a radio trigger, or could be the camera popup flash at lowest manual power level.
    Last edited by WayneF; 04-07-2013 at 02:53 AM.

  5. #5
    Senior Member

    Re: Speedlight setup for D3100

    Quote Originally Posted by žam View Post
    I did briefly look at remotes which have a 'commander' transmitter and anything up to four receivers - have a look on fleabay
    I am still not there yet. I really need to know a couple of things before I shell out on new equipment.

    My questions are:

    Can I buy a speedlight but have it on this hot shoe cable and still be able to use TTL?

    Will I be able to control a second speedlight TTL or do I need another gadget to accomplish this?

    I appreciate your help

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    carguy's Avatar

    Re: Speedlight setup for D3100

    Quote Originally Posted by MrNudge View Post
    I am still not there yet. I really need to know a couple of things before I shell out on new equipment.

    My questions are:

    Can I buy a speedlight but have it on this hot shoe cable and still be able to use TTL?

    Will I be able to control a second speedlight TTL or do I need another gadget to accomplish this?

    I appreciate your help
    Cable setups like that will usually retain TTL functionality.
    Joe

    D750 | 50mm f1.8G | Tamron 70-200 2.8 VC
    Fujifilm X100T | Nikon F3/T, N90s | Minolta A5, XG1 & X-570
    Detroit Imagery / My weekly contributions /
    About.me
    Notary Public & Loan Signing Agent


  7. #7
    Senior Member
    WayneF's Avatar

    Re: Speedlight setup for D3100

    Quote Originally Posted by MrNudge View Post
    My questions are:

    Can I buy a speedlight but have it on this hot shoe cable and still be able to use TTL?
    Yes, a hot shoe extension cable will let the flash do anything it could do directly on the hot shoe.

    Will I be able to control a second speedlight TTL or do I need another gadget to accomplish this?
    Yes, this hot shoe extension includes acting as a commander, if the flash has that capability.

    Two downsides.

    Cameras without Commander can use a flash as a commander, but they still do not have the FV Lock feature. Using the Nikon CLS Remote Wireless Flash System

    So there is high risk of getting pictures of the subject blinking when using Commander without FV Lock.


    And these cords are short, however they should work as a fill light in an umbrella, which should be very near the camera anyway.
    Last edited by WayneF; 04-07-2013 at 09:24 PM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member

    Re: Speedlight setup for D3100

    Quote Originally Posted by WayneF View Post
    Yes, a hot shoe extension cable will let the flash do anything it could do directly on the hot shoe.



    Yes, this hot shoe extension includes acting as a commander, if the flash has that capability.

    Two downsides.

    Cameras without Commander can use a flash as a commander, but they still do not have the FV Lock feature. Using the Nikon CLS Remote Wireless Flash System

    So there is high risk of getting pictures of the subject blinking when using Commander without FV Lock.


    And these cords are short, however they should work as a fill light in an umbrella, which should be very near the camera anyway.
    I will get a speedlight with commander mode on a stand connected to my D3100 via a hot shoe cable but the second light will be on another stand, so my question is... How will I get the second speedlight to flash?

    Thanks for your help

    Read more: http://nikonites.com/flashes/12520-s...#ixzz2PoNDbeev

  9. #9
    Senior Member

    Re: Speedlight setup for D3100

    I will get a speedlight with commander mode on a stand connected to my*D3100*via a hot shoe cable but the second light will be on another stand, so my question is... How will I get this second speedlight to flash?

    Thanks for your help

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    WayneF's Avatar

    Re: Speedlight setup for D3100

    Quote Originally Posted by MrNudge View Post
    I will get a speedlight with commander mode on a stand connected to my*D3100*via a hot shoe cable but the second light will be on another stand, so my question is... How will I get this second speedlight to flash?

    If speaking of TTL flash, then one flash can work on the hot shoe, or if connected to the hot shoe with the hot shoe extension cord.

    The only way to have multiple TTL flashes is by using the Commander, which is built into some Nikon camera models, and also into some Nikon flash units. There is no other way to have multiple TTL flashes in the Nikon system. See Using the Nikon CLS Remote Wireless Flash System about it. This commander could be in a flash on a hot shoe cord (but the cords are very short). This Commander provides the remote wireless triggering. This TTL solution may not be the most inexpensive solution, and without the FV Lock feature, pictures of blinking will be a probable problem in pictures of people (the commander flashes commands in their face, causing them to blink at just the wrong time).

    But if all flashes are in Manual flash mode, then flashes can be less expensive, and triggering becomes much simpler, and no blinking issues. Then for triggering, you can use PC sync cords, or simple optical slave units, or radio triggers, or any combination of those, to trigger the other flashes. See How to trigger speedlights Off camera

    Last edited by WayneF; 04-08-2013 at 10:10 PM.





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